Damn, I meant to post in April, but Liara has been monopolizing my time of late. She’s been, uh… high maintenance.
At any rate, it’s update time :)
The last couple of months have been spent almost exclusively on Liara. Before I talk about her, though, I want to touch on a couple changes for Steve and Kelly, along with progress on ThaneMOD. Liara warrants a separate post.
Steve’s content for BackOff is minimal, but he’s now been brought in line with other LIs. When BroShep is with Steve in Purgatory, the flirt option will only be available if there isn’t another romance locked in. In other words, no more flirting with Steve and having him reply that he knows you’re already with Kaidan or have a “lady waiting.” Also, a bug with the game not recognizing Miranda’s romance in this convo has been fixed.
I’ve made some tweaks to the dialogue wheel, like with every other LI. Implications of choices are clear, text is more succinct, and often less… icky. Remember that there won’t always be “agree” and “disagree” options anymore with BackOff. Expect it to feel more like ME1 and ME2.
KELLY & NEW NPC APPEARANCES
I thought Kelly was finished, but apparently not. While working on the “Labor of Liara” I needed a break from dialogue here and there. During these breaks I tried to work out how to change the appearance of certain ME1/ME2 NPCs who suffer from BioWare’s horrible “Makeover Syndrome” in ME3. Think Bailey, Kelly, Udina, and Aethyta. Possibly Chakwas. I decided to start with Kelly, since her model only appears in one game file. After a lot of trial and error I’ve (mostly) figured out the objects to edit. With the exception of facial geometry (those “feature morphs” and “offset bones” in Gibbed), Kelly now looks much more like her ME2 self. Miss Felicia Hannigan will also get some improvements, mostly to her very drab brown hair.
I expect to be able to apply the same methods for Kelly to Bailey, Udina, and Aethyta, but we’ll see if that pans out. These five are probably the worst offenders. I don’t really want to do any more than this, b/c changing one NPC involves editing all files their model appears in. For Bailey and Udina that means several files each. The more I do, the more room for compatibility issues with other mods. I’ll look into using .mod files, but they aren’t the best method for the long term since they can break with new revs of ME3Exp. I like to know the mods I create won’t lose functionality when I’m no longer around :]
Btw, in the image of Kelly above, please try to ignore all the shadows on her face. It’s not possible to get a good straight-on close up for Kelly during conversations – only through flycam which is very susceptible to bad lighting, lol.
ThaneMOD is currently being reorganized into multiple DLC mods. This is to assist with the “install and forget” method I hope to have in place for v3.0 and to ensure compatibility with BackOff. Some new EWAC content is in the pipeline. And, Kinkojiro and I have also been working together on a couple of very fun Easter Eggs for TMv3.0.
Most work on ThaneMOD – namely the romance scene and Huerta revamp – will pick up once the beta for BackOff is released in a month or two. The good news is that Liara forced me to learn yet even more about dialogue editing, and I’m finally in the place I need to be in, techncially, to do them justice. Working on Jacob was a big step, but Liara was even bigger. Expect Thane-related posts to pick up in July and August.
Back in a few with Liara’s BackOff highlights.